Shane “Shakey” Byrne and Ryuichi Kiyonari continued their intense “War for Four” MCE Insurance British Superbike titles battle with a victory apiece in two closely-fought races at the penultimate round at Silverstone to set up for a dramatic finale. Byrne holds a narrow 12 points advantage over Kiyonari going into the triple-header race Showdown at Brands Hatch (17/18/19 October).
Kiyonari took the initiative in the opening race at the Northamptonshire circuit, taking the lead on his Buildbase BMW in the early stages, but Byrne was shadowing his every move and Josh Brookes was also ready to get into the fight on his Milwaukee Yamaha.
Byrne closed in on Kiyonari and forced his Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki into the lead on the penultimate lap at Village, but the Japanese rider responded setting up an epic battle for supremacy on the final lap as the two riders traded places six times.
Byrne held on to take the victory by a narrow 0.064s margin from Kiyonari whilst Brookes claimed third and marked a return to the podium after his double DNF at Assen.
Byrne said: “Kiyo was incredibly strong and I needed to stay with him then on the last lap I had a little bit of a moment and I thought I have blown it. We passed each other and down the straight we were side by side and I knew whoever braked the latest would win the race. I went speedway style through the last corner and it was incredibly close but we did it.”
In the second contest Kiyonari was fixed on revenge and he claimed the lead from Byrne on the second lap of the race and twice was forced to defend his line strongly at Village as his arch rival tried to make a move. Byrne made a decisive attack to briefly lead, but the Japanese contender cut it back immediately and then held off the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider to the line.
Kiyonari said: “At the end of the race Shakey tried to pass me but I pushed very hard – every lap I was pushing hard and concentrating very hard, so I am pleased to take this win. I was disappointed to not win the first race, so this makes me happier.”
Byrne added after the second race: “That was one of the hardest second place ever. The pace was much hotter than in the first race and that meant the margins for passing were smaller. We ran so close to the limit, so fair play to Kiyo.”
Brookes said: “I knew we had a chance of the podium but as usual we pushed on hard and made changes right up until the first race. We found something that meant I could be a part of that amazing race and it was pleasing to be back on the podium rather than parc ferme after the race. I wished I had a little bit more to put into it and have a chance for the win, but pushing for second was a great improvement. Being back on the podium and in the fight felt as good as a win to me and I would have paid for a ticket to watch that one!
“In the second race I really wanted to stay with Shakey and Kiyo again and try and push to try and go better than we did in race one. Unfortunately what happened was pretty simple – I braked too late and I crashed out. I was trying even harder on the brakes as that was where I was able to make some time up on them as that area was where I had been stronger. Physics mean you can only brake so late and that lap was just too late and I was out.”
James Ellison took third place on the Lloyds British GBmoto Kawasaki, his first podium finish since his Brands Hatch crash, narrowly ahead of Milwaukee Yamaha’s Tommy Bridewell.
Bridewell said: “Today has been far from what we expected. We have not had an ideal weekend as the setting was out in Race 1 when I had no pace and was stuck with a group of riders. We made drastic changes for Race 2 and they made a lot of difference. It is a shame because we were a race behind. We are in a bit of a see-saw at the moment – we have one good race and one bad race. I could have got ahead of Josh here and now it looks like I will have to try again at Brands Hatch.”
Josh Waters finished seventh in race one but improved that result in the second bout with a fifth place finish. Waters is now challenging James Ellison for eight place in the championship and is 60 points clear of his Tyco Suzuki teammate John Hopkins.
Josh Waters: “If you had offered me a top-five finish in the dry at the start of the season I would have been peaking, but where we are now I want podiums and I could see it right in front of me in that second race. I can’t fault the team or the GSX-R1000 as it was superb today; the boys did a great job and my lap times were more consistent in race two. I’m pleased with top-five but I want to keep making progress and we can hopefully push on again at Brands Hatch for the final round.”
John Hopkins: “Going into race one we knew we had our work cut-out for us due to making the wrong tyre choice in qualifying, leaving us to start from 16th on the grid . Either way, I was determined to get the best start possible and make my way to the front in the early laps before the leaders cleared off, which was going to plan up until I lost the front under hard-braking passing Westmoreland. Sadly that ended up being the end to yet another disappointing weekend after a mechanical issue left us unable to start race two. No one was at fault, it was just a very unlucky issue that couldn’t have happened at a worse time. Regardless, I’ve got to say a big thanks to the team and my mechanics for all the hard work and I honestly couldn’t be more determined to finishing-out the year on a high at Brands in just under two weeks’ time.”
The 2014 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship will be decided at Brands Hatch with a triple header race weekend on 17-18-19 October.
BSB 2014 Showdown – Silverstone Race One Results
Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki)
Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW) +0.084s
Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) +0.368s
Dan Linfoot (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) +17.952s
Stuart Easton (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +18.524s
Chris Walker (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) 513
Glenn Irwin fought hard to claim the victory in the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship race as he fended off the challenges from the chasing pack of Luke Stapleford, Luke Mossey and Alastair Seeley at Silverstone.
The Ulsterman crossed the line just 0.330s ahead of Luke Stapleford aboard the Profile Triumph who had shattered the lap record four times in his pursuit of victory.
Stapleford had carved his way through from seventh on the opening lap to be attacking Luke Mossey aboard the Techcare Profile Triumph for second place by lap three but was forced to wait until lap nine to finally make the move stick.
Mossey had to settle for third place despite pushing hard in a frantic duel as the leading pack pulled a gap of seven seconds over the pursuing contenders.
Graeme Gowland, riding hard to pull back points lost in his off-track excursion of the previous afternoon picked off five places as he brought his Smiths Triumph into fifth place ahead of American James Rispoli aboard the Team Traction Control Yamaha.
Billy McConnell overcame the challenge of Gearlink Kawasaki’s Luke Hedger to take seventh place on his Smiths Triumph to take an 18 points lead over his team-mate Gowland going into the final race.
Billy McConnell: “It’s been one of those meetings and a tough one for sure but the positive thing is that I’ve come away with a bigger lead in the championship. I saw that Graeme had pulled in during Saturday’s race and then it was a battle to bring the bike home but I got duffed up on the last lap and got pushed back to eighth, which obviously lost me some good points. It put us on the fourth row for today’s race and although the bike felt strong, the front group just disappeared and their pace was phenomenal. If you’re not with that front train, it’s tough but I’ve extended my lead so I’ll go to Brands Hatch which is a strong circuit for me, and look to seal everything with some podiums.”
Graeme Gowland: “It’s been a hard weekend and with not having tested here, it made Friday a hectic day in terms of set-up and the wet track on Saturday put us even further on the back foot. The technical problem in Saturday’s race was a massive disappointment for all of us and although I salvaged the weekend with fifth on Sunday, I really struggled with the set-up of the bike and just couldn’t perform as I’d have liked. I’ve lost a few more points to Billy but I’m still in the title race and with Brands Hatch being one of my best tracks, I’ll go there, come out fighting and give it everything I’ve got.”
Taylor Mackenzie reflected on his first British Supersport podium which he took in Saturday’s sprint race: – “I don’t know what to say really but thanks to everyone at Tyco Suzuki for such a big effort. I’m delighted to get my first British Supersport podium and I had no ‘nose bleeds’ being in a podium position for most of the race. I just kept banging-in consistent lap times and even on that last lap I could have settled for third, but I wanted second for both myself and the team and I’m just delighted for everyone involved. The Tyco Suzuki GSX-R600 was brilliant throughout and it was great to finally get a bottle of champagne and a podium at such a top class venue.”
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship, Silverstone, Feature race:
Glenn Irwin (Gearlink Kawasaki)
Luke Stapleford (Techcare Profile Triumph) + 0.330s
Luke Mossey (Profile Triumph) +0.882s
Alastair Seeley (MarTrain Yamaha) +0.967s
Graeme Gowland (Smiths Triumph) +8.021s
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship standings after Silverstone:
Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph) 349 pts
Graeme Gowland (Smiths Triumph) 331
Alastair Seeley (MarTrain Yamaha) 315
Glenn Irwin (Gearlink Kawasaki) 270
Luke Stapleford (Techcare Profile Triumph) 250
British Superstock 1000
Danny Buchan made the perfect getaway, aboard his Tsingtao WK Kawasaki, heading off the challenges of Honda’s Jason O’Halloran, as he took the victory and with it the title.
“Champion, that sounds so good, especially after Donington where I joined the Craner club with a crash. I had a plan here and it worked, though I lost the front on one fast lap and that was a bit of a worry. But, it has been a very good year, a tough one, as I have been pushed hard by Jason.”
Aussie O’Halloran reflected: “It was has been a long hard battle with Danny all year, but he has won a lot of races and he deserves to be champion.” Hudson Kennaugh, the title winner of last season, snatched third place on the last lap from Josh Elliott.
British Superstock 600
Joe Collier took his first victory of the season aboard the Be Wiser Kawasaki and with it the lead in the title chase, by a single point going into the Brands Hatch finale, after a highly dramatic, incident packed race at Silverstone.
Kyle Ryde had taken the lead from the start, running just ahead of Andy Reid, in a furious dice for supremacy. But Reid crashed out of contention on the seventh lap, fearing his title dream had ended in the gravel. There was a final twist to come as Ryde, and his team-mate Ross Twyman ran out of fuel in the closing stages of the race as Collier roared through to win. Going into the final race, Collier leads by a single point over Ryde with Reid a further three adrift.
Motul British Motostar Championship
Bradley Ray took the victory on the FAB EE125GP bike ahead of Redline KTM’s Joe Irving and Taz Taylor on the FPW Hookless Holidays Honda but fourth place overall and second in the Moto3 category was just champion for the South African Jordan Weaving on his KTM. Jason Uribe, Asher Durham and the 125GP title winner Ed Rendell.
Ducati TriOptions Cup
Dennis Hobbs powered in his fifth victory of the season, to seal the title: “I got a big gap and at the point all sorts of things go through your mind but I kept it going – we’ve been consistent across the whole season, only off the podium twice, and this is great for me and the team.” Marty Nutt, the winner of Saturday’s race, took second ahead of Jonathan Railton, Darren Fry and Leon Morris who was suffering the after effects of his crash the previous afternoon.
Tristar R&G Triple Challenge
Freddy Pett sealed the crown as a brace of second places gave him an unassailable 55 points lead after a penultimate round in which Scott Pitchers and Tom Carne had shared the victories. Carne came through from fourth on the opening lap of Sunday’s race to take the lead on the third and then held off Pett to win by a third of a second with Phil Atkinson third.
Eastern Airways British Sidecar Championship
The Birchall brothers comfortably completed their weekend double, with this time Andy Peach/Charlie Richardson taking second place, a couple of second ahead of series leaders Sean Hegarty/James Neave who have extended their lead to 68 points over Roger Lovelock/Aki Alto going into the double points final round
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